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  • Mary Kay

Make Quesadillas from Last Night’s Roast Beef Dinner

Turn last night's leftover family roast beef into a spicy quesadilla for lunch!

Mom was always cooking ahead. That means that she usually cooked enough food for a couple of meals for the entire family. She was always thinking ahead to the next day. What is being scheduled for the day? Where will the kids be? Who will be home for meals and when. How and what can we cook for tonight’s meal and have enough left over for meals the next day?

From a roast beef dinner the night before, Mom would leave sliced meat in the refrigerator for sandwiches the next day. It was easy enough for us as younger kids to make our own meals. She was working out of the home, so she always made sure there was something easy for us to slap together when we got home from school or even supper if she

had to work late. Each one of us had our favorite ways to make the sandwiches from the leftovers. I loved cold sliced roasted carrots with the beef on toast with thousand island dressing. Dad liked his sandwiches on thick sliced homemade bread with butter. Others liked theirs with Miracle Whip and homemade dill pickles. Yes, Mom put up over 100 jars of dill pickles every late summer and baked her recipe of 5 homemade white bread loaves at least once a month.

I'm not sure she would approve, but nowadays I make quesadilla sandwiches out of the leftover home baked roast beef my husband and I make for evening suppers. The beef is already cooked and tender, without a lot of spices, just salt and pepper and maybe a bay leaf. So, why not use it for another meal with more spices? Hubby still makes the old-style sandwiches of leftover roast beef with thousand island dressing with lettuce – but, he makes his own homemade dressing – YUM! I go for something a little different – quesadillas with an added kick.

Got leftover pork or chicken?

And, of course, you can follow this same process with leftover chicken or pork from the night before. Shred the chicken or dice the pork chops and coat with taco seasoning. Proceed to layer all the items and add hot sauce, salsa and sour cream. Yum!!

Prepare your fry pan for the stovetop:

- Grab a pan large enough to handle your flour tortilla or one that has space for two side by side.

- Turn burner onto medium heat.

- Sprinkle pan with a little olive oil.

Gather up your delicious ingredients:

2 6-10” Flour tortillas per person

Leftover roast beef, thinly sliced

Leftover potatoes from the roast, thinly sliced

Leftover carrots from the roast, thinly sliced

Leftover onions from the roast, chopped

Fresh veggies from the fridge, sliced thinly, for added crunch

Juice from the roast

Taco seasoning (homemade or store bought)

Hot sauce

Monterrey, fresh shredded

Cheddar cheese, fresh shredded



Sour cream

Layer the ingredients into your pan:

- Brown the first tortilla on one side in the fry pan. If it puffs up, poke it with a fork so you can easily layer your ingredients.

- Sprinkle the roast beef slices on both sides with taco seasoning. Then layer it on the tortilla.

- Add thinly potatoes, carrots, onions from the roast.

- Add other veggies if you like, such as peppers, cilantro, etc.

- Spoon with some of the roast beef juice from last night, to moisten the meat.

- Sprinkle your favorite hot sauce(s) on the layered ingredients.

- Layer on both cheeses and cilantro and top it with the other tortilla.

- Heat until the bottom tortilla begins to become golden brown.

- Flip carefully and heat until the bottom tortillas also become golden brown. Go ahead and peak under the top tortilla to see if the cheeses are melting.

- If everything looks and feels warm, it’s time to serve with your salsa and sour cream.

- Of course, this is a great place to add a side salad and refried beans if you like. And, be sure to add more hot sauce as you eat.

Alternative ways to make your quesadilla and use up that leftover roast:

- One alternative way to make your quesadilla is to start with one tortilla heating in the pan.

- Layer your goodies on one half of it. Then, fold it over and flip it for a one-tortilla quesadilla.

- Serve it alongside salsa and sour cream.

- Another alternative is to heat all the ingredients, including the meat and veggies in one pan or the microwave.

- Sprinkle and stir in the taco seasoning.

- Heat the tortilla in the microwave between two damp paper towels.

- Then, roll the goodies inside the warm tortilla and dip in salsa with sour cream.

No Tortillas in the house?-

- If you don’t have any tortillas in the house, try layering the ingredients between two slices of toast.

- Or, butter the outsides, layer with your goodies and fry as a grilled cheese.

- Or warm up all the goodies in the microwave and roll up in a slice of bread. I’ve even mashed the bread by rolling my rolling pin over the bread to make a thinner, more sturdy rolled up sandwich.

Turn your leftover roast beef into a Nacho Platter!

- The chips add a nacho crunch to your leftovers. Yum!!!

- Cut the leftover roast and veggies into bite sized chunks and sprinkle with taco seasoning.

- Layer everything over tortilla chips with hot sauce and zap for a few seconds in the microwave.

- Serve with salsa and sour cream, more hot sauce, etc.

- Enjoy with a friend!

Get creative, see what’s available in the fridge. Use your imagination in the kitchen and “Bake your own Memories!”

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